Yeo Valley Organic uses over 500,000 litres of organic milk each week, which it buys from local farms through OMSCo. The co-operative also supplies the company with skimmed milk, which it uses to make the milk concentrates needed for yogurts. Most of the Yeo Valley fruit comes in the form of fresh conserves from a producer about 25 miles from the production plant. To guarantee a year-round supply of organic ingredients, the company imports most of its fruit (in particular strawberries, raspberries and apricots) from growers in tropical and sub-tropical climates where natural climatic conditions allow their growth without the use of pesticides.
In the autumn of 2002, Yeo Valley Organic signed a contract with British Sugar to access the first UK grown sugar beet for its products: 40% of the first year's crop (available as processed sugar in 2003) will go into Yeo Valley Organic products.
Yogurt is produced by adding a bacterial culture to milk, which converts the milk's sugar (lactose) into lactic acid. Other chemical by-products are formed at the same time, all of which contribute to yogurt's distinctive taste and smell. Depending on the fat content and sweetness required, cream, sugar and fruit are then added. The whole manufacturing process takes about 22.5 hours.
Yeo Valley Organic has production sites in Cannington, Somerset, and Heathfield, Devon (where it produces organic ice cream). These employ around 200 people. In 2001, the company created a new processing plant for making organic fromage frais. It also set up new "high-care" areas for luxury, cream-based desserts, which are more prone to contamination and bacterial growth than yogurt.